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Reinventing the Japanese Balcony

Tia Pindoriya and Lisa Henley from Curtin University's School of Design and the Built Environment have been working remotely to develop the underutilized balcony space in a common Japanese apartment.


As the majority of Japanese working class have migrated to the major cities to live and work, the demand on the already limited property market has increased and space has become a premium. Many of these city dwellings are a 1 or 2 bedroom home with a combined kitchen and dining space. These apartments also have balcony space which is used for hanging laundry.


Tia and Lisa have found that these spaces have far more value to offer and for a modest budget can transform the space into an extra room. Especially as many workers find they must now spend a large proportion of their time working from home, the need to efficiently use every centimetre in a Japan home has never been more apparent.


Tia has used a mid century modern + organic approach to extending the internal space to the exterior using fittings and furniture that would be just as comfortable inside as out. The design is flexible as most pieces are multi-purpose and adjustable. The blinds are used to control privacy as well as light, yet still provide a comfortable space to hang your washing as well as entertain guests or take a break while working from home. The whole design including everything needed comes in under budget at 89,000 Japanese yen or $1070 Australian.


Lisa has developed a minimalist design where less is more and clean, beautiful materials can be admired. Lisa has concentrated on using quality materials as well as the interaction of light and shadow. The pure white walls frame the natural scenery as well as providing a luxurious contrast from the stone tile floor. The minimalist space highlights the quality outdoor furniture and vegetation. Lisa's design also comes in under budget at 89,000 Japanese yen or $1070 Australian. These two exceptional interns have shown great design initiative and ability to solve societal problems through architecture. Thanks to Curtin University's School of Design and the Built Environment and the Australian Government’s New Colombo Plan for allowing this program to move forward.

#curtin #neoplaarchitect #designjapan

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